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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Russia: We’ll Nuke ‘Aggressors’ First

Wired:

Russia: We’ll Nuke ‘Aggressors’ First

by Nathan Hodge

Russia is weighing changes to its military doctrine that would allow for a “preventive” nuclear strike against its enemies — even those armed only with conventional weapons. The news comes just as American diplomats are trying to get Russia to cut down its nuclear stockpile, and put the squeeze on Iran’s suspect nuclear program.

In an interview published today in Izvestia, Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of the Kremlin’s security council, said the new doctrine offers “different options to allow the use of nuclear weapons, depending on a certain situation and intentions of a would-be enemy. In critical national security situations, one should also not exclude a preventive nuclear strike against the aggressor.”

What’s more, Patrushev said, Russia is revising the rules for the employment of nukes to repel conventionally armed attackers, “not only in large-scale, but also in a regional and even a local war.”

Gulp. If I were in Georgia — or in any other country Russia considers part of its sphere of influence — that formulation would make me pretty anxious.

The Russian Federation is considering the “first strike” option as part of a larger overhaul of military doctrine. The new doctrine, which is supposed to be presented to President Dmitry Medvedev later this year, is supposed to provide “flexible and timely” responses to national security threats.

The United States and Russia may prepping to negotiate a new strategic arms reduction treaty after President Obama declared a “reset” in relations between Moscow and Russia. But Patrushev, apparently, didn’t get the memo. In the interview, he takes a swipe at the United States and NATO, saying that the alliance “continues to press for the admission of new members to NATO, the military activities of the bloc are intensifying, and U.S. strategic forces are conducting intensive exercises to improve the management of strategic nuclear weapons.”

In other words, Moscow is holding to a hard line, precisely at a time when Washington is trying to play nice. The administration wants the Kremlin’s help — to pressure Iran, to revive the arms-control process — but the bear still needs to brandish nukes.

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

hows that mutual disarmament talk going for ya Barry?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 5:06:00 pm  
Anonymous revereridesagain said...

Patrushev: Shaddap.

Is it my imagination or has the USSR/Russian leadership never been able to pass up a day without rattle their nuclear sabres in the 60 years since they got the damn things?

Of course previous to the ascendancy of Teh One we could at least assume that the doctrine of MAD was sufficiently entrenched in their brains that they'd know better than to do anything but threaten...

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 6:46:00 pm  
Anonymous MEP said...

And of course we will let Russia visit our US nuke sites.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/10/13/tentative-inspection-program-allow-russia-visit-nuclear-sites/

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 7:06:00 pm  
Blogger shiva said...

Good

Then the Russians will be obliged to look the other way if some boby adopts the same policy

The question now remains Israel, Iran?

Friday, October 16, 2009 4:51:00 am  

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